In Mexico's most iconic molé, mulato, ancho, and pasilla chiles combine with warm spices to create a velvety smooth sauce that's ideal for spooning over chicken. Todd Coleman
We fell in love with the nuanced and varied cuisine of Mexico during the making of our August/September 2012 special Mexico issue. From deeply-spiced moles to grilled steak tacos and fruity tomatillo salsas, here are all the recipes from issue #149.
Sopa de Fideo (Mexican Noodle Soup)
The thin vermicelli-like noodles called fideos add starch and body to this elemental tomato soup from Patricia Quintana, chef-owner of Izote restaurant in Mexico City.
Pollo en Escabeche Oriental (Yucatan-Style Chicken and Onion Stew)
Delicately spiced, tangy escabeche, a preparation typical of the Yucatan, makes a vibrant marinade and sauce for stewed chicken. The grapefruit, orange, and lime juices called for in this recipe approximate the flavor of the Yucatan’s sour oranges, which are difficult to get here.
This clean, flavorful preparation of whole fish stuffed with pico de gallo preserves all the fish’s natural juices. Mullet is typically used, but red snapper works just as well.
Pollo Pibil (Yucatan-Style Chicken with Achiote)
Marinated in a crimson achiote and citrus juice marinade and served with pickled onions, this chicken dish is eaten all over the Yucatan. It gets an additional layer of flavor from the banana leaves that line the inside of the pot, but should you opt not to use them, the result will still be delicious.
This Yucatan-style breakfast dish, topped with peas, ham, and Gouda or Edam cheese, has a spicy habanero and tomato sauce.
Mexican Bean and Cheese Sandwich (Molletes)
The bolillo, a French-style crusty white bread roll from Mexico, is the traditional foundation of this comforting dish, but a kaiser or most any other sandwich roll will work well.
In this dish, from Jorge Boneta, former chef at the Hotel Matilda in San Miguel de Allende, the pork and beans cook together, which enhances the flavor of each ingredient.
Beef and Guajillo Chile Stew (Caldo de Res)
Infused with smoky guajillo chiles, this nourishing, slow-cooked stew is usually made with various tough cuts of beef, but we found oxtails to be the most flavorful choice.
Traditionally made in Puebla to celebrate Mexican Independence Day on September 16, these chiles have a minced pork filling enhanced with chopped fruit, and a creamy walnut sauce.
Thick, oblong masa tortillas (named huarache, or sandal, because of their shape) are topped with grated cheese, salsa roja, sauteed steak, and sliced cactus in this classic street food.
Arroz a la Mexicana (Mexican-Style Red Rice)
This classic Mexican rice, embellished with tomatoes, serrano chiles, and peas, is a versatile side dish for all kinds of meat and vegetable mains. See the recipe for Arroz a la Mexicana »